OUR TEACHERS

Community. Inspiration. Creativity.

painting classes

Email Erin
Cell: 303-502-7522

ERIN

Instructor for Weekday Adult Painting and Drawing Classes 

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and minor in Art History from Colorado State University

I am a painter, Illustrator, muralist, and instructor, currently working and residing in Colorado Springs. I teach numerous painting and drawing classes at Bemis School of Art at the Colorado Springs Fine Art Center at Colorado College, as well as at the Manitou Art Center. I have also taught painting at Cottonwood Center for the Arts, and teach numerous private lessons, and Figure drawing sessions.

Art has always been an integral and important part of my life. After putting myself through school, earning 2 Fine Art degrees, I lived in numerous cities throughout the US, always painting, but working a variety of jobs. Upon my return to my home town, with much determination and hard work, I became a professional artist, showing and selling my work, as well as teaching.

I believe that art brings all people together, as it helps us to express ourselves in a necessary, and even therapeutic way. Creativity is a calming, often challenging, and peaceful process for me. I am extremely passionate about Art and Art History, and look forward to sharing that passion and experience with my new students, and old, at Pikes Peak Artist Collective!

painting classes

Email Amanda
Cell: 936-788-4556

AMANDA

Instructor for Youth Membership Classes Monday & Youth Workshops

Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Texas
Master of Social Work from Simmons College
Focus on therapeutic art

Amanda is a painter, writer, and instructor with a background as a mental health therapist. She is a lifelong artist and began working as a sewist’s assistant at age 13, and a professional photographer at the age of 16. Amanda started her career by teaching art to elementary-aged children in both Texas and Boston. When she became a therapist, she focused on incorporating therapeutic art with clients and colleagues.

Amanda has extensive experience facilitating art therapy groups for neurodivergent children and teenagers, as well as people in recovery from eating disorders. While living in Memphis, she began holding art journaling and watercolor workshops for helping professionals. Amanda relocated to Colorado Springs in 2021 to continue her work as an artist in this beautiful, creative community.

Amanda values providing a calm, creative environment to reduce stress. She is passionate about creating a safe space for children to develop their artistic independence and express themselves freely. Amanda is excited to get to know the community at PPAC and witness the beautiful art the kids will create!

painting classes

Email Kirsten
Cell: 719-310-5761

KIRSTEN

Instructor for Youth Membership Class Tuesday Afterschool & Youth Workshops

Bachelor of Visual and Performing Arts from University of Colorado at Colorado Springs
Master Fine Art Vermont College of Fine Art In Progress

Kirsten is a visual and performing artist currently working and living in Colorado Springs. She been involved in the local arts community in Colorado Springs since 1997. She studied nursing and graphic design before deciding a career in the arts and education was where her heart truly wants to be. She was blessed with the opportunity to be an intern for PPAC while pursuing her undergraduate degree at UCCS and is thrilled to continue her education and teaching at PPAC while she pursues her MFA.

As an artist and studying MFA student Kirsten works in a variety of media including textiles, drawing, painting, sculpture, and installation.  She is a firm believer in the idea “no matter what is created, it is the act of creating and the learning process which is most valuable”. She allows curiosity to be a driving force in creation while simultaneously conducting research into the visual cultural significance.

Kirsten aims to provide a fun, safe, engaging space where students can freely experiment and make discoveries with gentle guidance. She loves teaching youth because they are fearless in their creative endeavors. Trying something again but in a new way is always an option and youth fearlessly tackle the challenge. Kirsten finds this type of engagement not only allows a child the opportunity to discover and use their own creativity to come to solutions but also helps to instill a sense of confidence in their process. She allows her students the opportunity to talk about the work they make. She views her classroom as a collective space of collaboration amongst community.

Art Classes for kids

Current Class Offerings:

Adult 4 Week Pottery Workshop June

Email Tiah
Cell: 331-442-7996

TIAH

Teacher of Adult Clay Membership Classes

Bachelors in Public Relations w/ a Minor in Business

Tiah moved with her husband to Colorado Springs from Chicago in 2021. Tiah owned and operated a pottery business called Tall Pine Pottery for the past 6 years.

As an artist she has created wheel thrown pottery and custom pieces for restaurants, boutiques, and individual clients.

Tiah has taught wheel throwing classes for over four years with new and repeat clients. One of her greatest joys is connecting with people in her community and having the opportunity to show them the art of wheel throwing.

Tiah is delighted to join the PPAC community and continue to enhance others creative expression while teaching them the art of clay.

How Tiah teaches: “I am a visual learner, so if the wheel intimidates you at first, know that I will walk you through it step by step. I like to sit with my students and go through each step together until you are comfortable. From learning how to wedge your clay correctly all the way to your final piece of art coming out of the kiln, I will be there to help. My method is simple; take deep breaths, be patient with yourself, and let yourself have fun. I promise you will make more than an ashtray :).”

Tiah truly believes working with clay at PPAC is more than just making a mug or vase. It is a space for you to take time for yourself, relax, let things go for two hours and just create with your hands.

Tiah looks forward to meeting you!

painting classes

Email Tessa
Cell: 978-476-1282

TESSA

Instructor for Thursday Adult Clay
Clay Date Nights, Small Group Clay Sessions,
Youth Art Workshops

Bachelor of Arts in Art Education
(grades 5-12) and Minor in Italian from Salem State University

I’m originally from the east coast, but my love for travel and spending time in nature brought me to beautiful Colorado Springs. I’ve had a passion for art-making for as long as I can remember, experimenting with different areas of art spanning from mixed media painting to photography and even glassblowing, though my primary focus is currently in ceramics. I came to Pikes Peak Artist Collective in 2021 as a way to get involved in the local ceramics community. I met Rebecca whose vibrant energy and mission immediately attracted me to the PPAC community.

In 2013 I earned my B.A. in Art with a concentration in Art Education from Salem State University, and became certified to teach Visual Art to grades 5-12. After graduating I realized I preferred the learning environment of a community arts setting over a traditional school setting, where it’s more about connection and art exploration over grades. For the past 12 years I’ve been teaching children and teens in summer camp, community arts studio settings, and after school programs. In 2014 I began working and teaching at a ceramics studio in coastal MA which allowed me to expand my teaching to adult classes as well. Teaching also encourages me to develop in my own art, through my small business which I started in 2015 under the name Tessa Lation Studios, where I make and sell my ceramics.

My teaching philosophy is deeply rooted in personalization. I appreciate getting to meet and form a connection with each of my students, to have the chance to work with them one-on-one, accommodating their learning needs and interests. I believe the arts are for everyone, even those who don’t see themselves as traditional artists. I think a comfortable arts setting can offer healing through creating with your hands, as well as a bridge for connecting with other people in a supportive and inspiring community.

I’m passionate about helping people gain confidence in the arts, especially in ceramics. I’m particularly experienced in Handbuilding methods of ceramics, as those are the ones I’ve been drawn to. I also love getting people excited about Wheelthrowing, giving them a foundation to get into their own flow and finetune their skills. Over the years of teaching ceramics, I’ve come up with several “tricks of the trade” to help people along the way. I’m always happy to offer up several different methods to help a student break through any roadblock they might encounter.

Art Classes for kids

Email Ms. Rhonda
Cell: 719-338-5193

MS. RHONDA

Ms. Rhonda’s Youth Studio Graduate Class 

BFA from The University of North Texas
Extensive training in High Trust Psychology

I formed the Studio Graduate class as I saw what the children wanted and needed – as artists AND as learners. As a result we have a class designed to balance structure and freedom – a “flipped” classroom or art studio where the student produces work primarily from their own vision and then receive a monthly “touch point” along the way. A touch point is a teacher directed art lesson. From art history, to art appreciation to specific art techniques, the student watches a teacher’s demo, adding deeply to their repertoire of skills that they can then integrate into their own art-envisioning/making process.

The unique twist to the Grad class is that they receive direct assistance from each other and myself as they make their art work, so it is almost like a private and group class all in one!
The Grad class is not based on age-level- it is based on a readiness to produce work independently. So the ages can vary in the class. What is so beautiful about the Studio Graduate class is that the soul, passion and energy of the group is a pretty “even playing field” so this class organically forms into that “sanctuary” where young people can live their artist-self with courage, a willingness to grow and authentic love for exercising that voice inside of them that truly needs a platform. The Studio Graduate class is that platform.

painting classes

Email Katie
Cell: 715-404-9795

KATIE

Instructor for Clay Date Nights, Small Group Clay Sessions

Bachelor of Arts in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Katie started her professional career in social work, working at several local community agencies here in Colorado Springs. Over the past few years, Katie has pursued her artistic hobbies as a new way to connect to the community. Katie began by assisting with youth art classes at PPAC, using all forms of media to create art. Katie has since transitioned to focusing on teaching adult ceramic classes.

Katie’s goal is to create an atmosphere for students and artists to pursue their creativity. She is there to encourage and support local artists- both those new to working with clay and those with prior experience. Everyone is welcome and she will be there to support you throughout your session. Katie believes that a supportive environment is key when trying something new, and as your teacher, she sees her role as creating that environment for your session.

In our pottery date nights and small group sessions, you will have the freedom to play, explore and create with wheel throwing and hand building techniques. The small group setting is perfect for you to build memories with your friends and loved ones, try something new, and connect to your community at the same time- and most importantly, rest and have fun!

Katie can’t wait to share her passion for ceramics with you. See you at the studio!

Art Classes for kids

Email Gina
Cell: 317-658-2322

GINA

Teacher of “Sunday Clay Workshops”
Bachelors of Arts in Ceramics from Herron School of Art and Design
Masters of Art Therapy/ Counseling from Southwestern College

Gina’s art career started at the Indianapolis Art Center where she was first a student and later became a ceramics instructor and the assistant technician for the ceramics studio. Gina taught for seven years at the Indianapolis Art Center, she learned that her love for ceramics as an art form is influenced largely by the community, and she feels it is an integral part of being a ceramics artist. Whether you’re firing a wood kiln or curating an art show, being part of an artist community is an invaluable asset.

Being inspired by the inherent healing that occurs during the creative process, she moved to Santa Fe to study Art Therapy. While in Santa Fe, she fell in love with the raw, natural beauty of the earth and the colors of the southwest. Her journey brought her to Colorado Springs where she is grateful to be able to call home. Her artwork is inspired by the gorgeous environment and the air of adventure that the mountains instill.

While searching for a local artist community in Colorado Springs, she synchronistically stumbled upon Pikes Peak Artist Collective. She was drawn to PPAC by it’s radiating inclusivity and generosity. She is excited to share her knowledge of the ceramic process and ceramic techniques while bearing witness to the healing and growth that the creative process promotes.
Art classes for kids

Email Rebecca
Cell: 717-875-5200

REBECCA

Owner/Operating Manager

Bachelor of Arts in Art and a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies from the University of Oregon
Focus in glaze chemistry and environmental design.

Throughout my life I have had a strong awareness of and attraction to the beauty in all things; I am excited to bring my passion for beauty, design, and people to Pikes Peak Artist Collective.

As a life-long artist, I have been a painter, jewelry maker, and a ceramic artist. I appreciate the beauty in all forms of art but I find my primary medium for creative expression is working with clay.

Through my appreciation of creative expression, I want to collaborate with other art educators to support the growth of artists in Colorado Springs.

My experience at the University of Oregon allowed me to explore art and creative expression and enriched my passion as an artist. My Environmental Studies degree at the University of Oregon furthered my appreciation of the natural world providing me with multicultural experiences in Mexico, Belize and Guatemala. From those experiences I came to appreciate the changing world we are apart of and the importance that fostering the expression of creativity is necessary for the sustainability of a healthy world.

After moving to Colorado Springs from Pennsylvania with my husband Casey, I met Marcie Anderson owner of Studio 101 that was originally started by Rhonda Conn-Parent. My progression into ownership in 2019 was natural and an inspiration to honor the history of the studio and keep what has been created as a viable part of the community.

We look forward to continue to provide a supportive and comfortable art education center for both children and adults.

My goal is to see artists creating in a nurturing space that enhances expression, surrounded by art work created by children and adults, with various teachers providing different perspectives and skills and a wide variety of art shows held by different PPAC artists. As a community we can support one another, inspire our souls and thrive. Most of all, I am excited to meet you and learn how we can collectively enable the expression of art in Colorado Springs.

Art Classes For Kids

We love it!

“My daughter’s weekly art classes are the best part of her week. She has learned a wide variety of art techniques, her favorite being pottery.”

– Elizabeth

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We are always doing new things and thinking of ways to engage with the community to create a positive impact through art. We’d love to stay in touch with you. Please join our monthly newsletter below if you’d like to be in the loop!

Art Classes For kids